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December 26, 2005

Indian Ocean tsunami, one year after

Indian Ocean tsunami, one year after – Wikinews, the free news source

Indian Ocean tsunami, one year after

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Monday, December 26, 2005 One year on from the Indian Ocean tsunami, the world’s grief and compassion returned to the tsunami-battered coastlines of the Indian Ocean, where at least 216 000 people lost their lives. Under a clear sky and before a gentle sea, the world commemorated those lost their lives, in one of the worst natural disasters that the modern world has experienced.

Earthquake 20041226 96 3 globe.jpg

Since the Indian Ocean tsunami, patchy progress has been made on the return to a normal life for those who lived through the experience. Efforts to implement a warning system similar to that coordinated by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii have past a number of significant milestones. Tourist resorts in many places have been rebuilt, and many visiting them at this time do so as a form of remembrance. Yet still there remain those who may never recover from the tragic events of one year ago. Some $13 billion was pledged to relief and recovery efforts, of which 75 percent has already been secured.

Damage left after the December 2004 tsunami hit Sri Lanka

Banda Aceh

In one of the first ceremonies, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono joined in a moment of silence at theBaiturrahman mosque located in a Banda Aceh coastal suburb flattened by the disaster. Yudhoyono said that “was under the same blue sky, exactly one year ago, that Mother Earth unleashed her most destructive power upon us, The assault began with a massive earthquake but … that was only a prelude to the horrific catastrophe to come.”

In a live video address UN Secretary General Kofi Annan said “The toughest time after last year’s devastating tsunami may be yet to come, It was so brutal, so quick, so extensive that we are still struggling to fully comprehend it.”

Andaman and Nicobar archipelago

Many of the survivors of the tsunami who live in the Andaman and Nicobar islands have yet to see significant benefits from international relief efforts. Over 10,000 families are having to come to terms with the policies of their government. Whilst local people would be happy to continue with traditional wood and bamboo materials, disputes see the government trying to impose higher standards.

Thailand

In Thailand, the anniversary of the massive wave sees tourists returning and reconstruction of resorts. However, not all is so positive. Many who lost loved ones suffered from Post-traumatic stress disorder, and whilst 75% of those suffering are said to be recovered, those who still suffer may need life-long psychiatric help. In Phang-nga province, the hardest hit part of Thailand, there are around 300 people in that category, their symptoms including a deep-seated fear of the sea. Binge drinking has also become a problem among many who lost everything, including family, when the disaster struck.

The December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami hits Thailand

In an attempt to focus on a recovery from the trauma inflicted on the children of Thailand, concerned parties have published a number of children’s books aimed at rehabilitating. Sponsored by the Canadian Embassy, The Day the Tsunami Came tells the tale of a boy who loses his father when the wave hit his fishing village in Phanag-nga province. Its aim is to spread the message to those affected that they are not alone. Apart from publication in Thai and English, the book will be available in Swedish, Dutch, Indonesian and Singhalese.

Measures to prevent a recurrence of the massive casualties have been implemented in the year following the tsunami. Earlier this month Thailand’s tsunami early warning system passed its first official test. National Disaster Warning Centre Director Plodprasop Suraswadi stated, “Thailand is the first country in the region to successfully install a comprehensive tsunami early warning system. I believe the system can, from now on, save lives and assets of Thais and international tourists alike”. The centre is due to be expanded in the coming year to cover “natural disasters [such] as severe floods, forest fires and even air pollution.” Implementation of the tsunami warning system has not all gone according to plan. Earlier in the month a false alarm caused by a technical error panicked tourists and local residents in the six provinces hit by the disaster, Krabi, Phang-nga Phuket, Ranong, Satun and Trang.

Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra and a member of the royal family who lost her son were among those who spoke in the resort island of Phuket, the source of some of the most graphic footage of the incoming waves. Thousands attended ceremonies held in Phuket and other affected parts of the country, observing periods of where flags were lowered to half-mast and bells rung in remembrance.

Some villagers refused to take part saying the rites were expensive, inappropriate, events designed to attract tourists and showcase the government.

Europe

Across Europe; hundreds joined in commemorating those who died. In Sweden, which suffered the highest loss of life for any country outside of Asia, official ceremonies were held, with more Swedes attended ceremonies in Thailand.

Related news

  • “New Zealand Tsunami heroes to receive Special Service Medal” — Wikinews, December 26, 2005
  • New tsunami could hit soon” — Wikinews, January 18, 2005
  • “Tsunami toll passes 80,000 people as relief effort continues” — Wikinews, December 29, 2004
  • “Asian earthquake toll nears 60,000” — Wikinews, December 28, 2004
  • U.S. and U.K. governments warn citizens against travelling to areas hit by tsunamis” — Wikinews, December 27, 2004
  • “Strongest earthquake in 40 years hits Southeast Asia” — Wikinews, December 31, 2004

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New Zealand Tsunami heroes to receive Special Service Medal

Filed under: 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami,Archived,New Zealand,Oceania — admin @ 5:00 am

New Zealand Tsunami heroes to receive Special Service Medal

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Monday, December 26, 2005

A new medal has been created for New Zealanders who helped in recovery efforts after the Boxing Day Tsunami.

Called the New Zealand Special Service Medal (Asian Tsunami) it recognises the work of New Zealanders who went to the region after the tsunami; locating the missing, identifying the dead, and assisting those left behind. Defence Minister Phil Goff says New Zealanders who served in the devastated areas in the first two months after the tsunami, are to receive the medal.

In a provisional list; which was released today; 163 New Zealanders are honoured in which 37 are non-military or police personnel (including aid workers).

Also, forty-seven police officers will receive the honour for their work identifying bodies in Thailand.

Prime Minister Helen Clark said the medal recognised “the special service of those New Zealanders who undertook often harrowing tasks in dangerous conditions”.

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May 19, 2005

Dec. 2004 Sumatra quake was longest ever recorded

Dec. 2004 Sumatra quake was longest ever recorded

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Thursday, May 19, 2005

According to new information about the earthquake of December 26, 2004, it was the longest-lasting earthquake ever recorded.

“Normally, a small earthquake might last less than a second; a moderate sized earthquake might last a few seconds. This earthquake lasted between 500 and 600 seconds (about 10 minutes),” said Charles Ammon, associate professor of geosciences at Penn State University. “Globally, this earthquake was large enough to basically vibrate the whole planet as much as half an inch, or a centimeter. Everywhere we had instruments, we could see motions,” Ammon continued.

This quake released an amount of energy equal to a 100 gigaton bomb, according to Roger Bilham, professor of geological sciences at the University of Colorado. And that power lasted longer than any quake ever recorded. “No point on Earth remained undisturbed,” said Bilham.

The quake was centered in the Indian Ocean, and it created the biggest gash in the Earth’s seabed ever observed. It measured nearly 800 miles, about the distance from northern California to southern Canada. Scientists have upgraded the magnitude of the quake from 9.0 to around 9.1-9.3, which is a dramatically more powerful quake.

“Two hours after the earthquake has occurred, the wave is spreading out from the Bay of Bengal,” Thorne Lay, professor of earth sciences and director of the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics at the University of California, Santa Cruz said. “Two satellites went over, with the capability of measuring the elevation of the ocean surface. It was just good luck that the passage of the satellites caught the tsunami in motion. There will be more earthquakes of this type, and with more humans exposed to the hazard there will be more devastating losses of life. What we hope to do is develop technologies that can minimize that loss.”.

Findings reported in the various papers:

  • In Sri Lanka, more than 1,600 kilometres from the epicenter, the ground moved nearly 10 centimetres.
  • The rupture spread from south to north. Seismometers in Russia recorded the quake at a higher frequency because it was moving toward them, while those in Australia measured a lower frequency as it moved away.
  • When the surface waves from the Sumatra quake reached Alaska they triggered a swarm of 14 earthquakes in the Mount Wrangell area.

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March 26, 2005

Gender imbalance in Tsunami deaths

Gender imbalance in Tsunami deaths – Wikinews, the free news source

Gender imbalance in Tsunami deaths

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Saturday, March 26, 2005 Up to four times as many women as men died in the December 26 Indian Ocean Tsunami, figures published by Oxfam International today reveal.

“In some villages it now appears that up to 80% of those killed were women. This disproportionate impact will lead to problems for years to come unless everyone working on the aid effort addresses the issue now. We are already hearing about rapes, harassment and forced early marriages. We all need to wake up to this issue and ensure the protection, inclusion and empowerment of the women that have survived,” said, Becky Buell, Oxfam’s Policy Director.

As well as recognition of the disparity, and further research, Oxfam calls for a number of practical measures including assistance for men in affected areas to “adapt to changing gender roles including caring of children” and better protection for women, who may be finding themselves severely outnumbered by men.

Beached boat in Galle, Sri Lanca after 2004 Tsunami

As well as reporting that workers on the ground have been “becoming increasingly aware that a disproportionate percentage of the fatalities there were female”, the study looks in detail at a number of locations in Indonesia, Sri Lanka and , the three countries with greatest death toll from the disaster, and finds consistently that women killed outnumber men.

The differences are explained in the report as originating both in differences in ability — more men can swim and climb trees in the affected areas than women, and men are generally physically stronger — as well as in differences in activity that the individuals were engaged in at the time the tsunami struck — many women in Aceh were indoors at home with the children on a Sunday morning, while many men were fishing at sea, or on errands.

In India, many of the women were waiting at the sea-shore for men to bring home the catch, when the wave hit. The wave at sea had not yet broken, and so posed no threat to vessels far enough from shore.

In Sri Lanka in Batticoloa District, the tsunami hit at the hour women on the east coast usually took their baths in the sea.

Women looking after children at the time of the tidal wave were further distracted by trying to save their children, while men away from the house were able to dedicate more of their efforts to saving themselves.

Another factor particularly important in Aceh was that many of the men of the region had left to seek work elsewhere, while women stayed behind in their home community, which was almost completely wiped out by the wave.

The survey looked at Aceh Besar district of Indonesia, the North Aceh district, the two worst-affected districts of Tamil Naidu in South India, being Nagapattinam and Cuddalore, and used rough statistics and anecdotal information from Sri Lanka, where hard figures are not available.

References

See also

  • “Strongest earthquake in 40 years hits Southeast Asia” — Wikinews, 08:52, 26 Dec 2004


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

March 24, 2005

Tsunami death toll updated

Tsunami death toll updated – Wikinews, the free news source

Tsunami death toll updated

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Thursday, March 24, 2005

A village near the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia, devastated after the tsunami

New figures on the Indian Ocean Tsunami disaster death toll have been released by Indonesia’s National Disaster Relief Coordination Agency. It confirms 126,473 dead and 93,943 missing in Indonesia, the worst hit nation by far.

The tsunami was the result of an undersea earthquake near the northern tip of Sumatra (in Indonesia) on December 26. The waves struck as far away as Tanzania on Africa’s east coast.

According to Sri Lanka’s Centre for National Operations, it was the second hardest-hit by the disaster with 30,957 dead, with another 5,637 people listed as missing.

According to SBS World News today, the total dead and missing for all eleven countries damaged by the tsunami now stands at 282,517.


Dead and missing in countries hit by December 26, 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami
Country dead missing total
Indonesia 126,473 93,943 220,416
Sri Lanka 30,957 5,637 36,594
India 10,749 5,640 16,389
Thailand 5,595 3,001 8,596
Somalia 298 * 298 *
Maldives 82 82
Malaysia 68 68
Burma 61 61
Tanzania 10 10
Bangladesh 2 2
Kenya 1 1
Total 174,296 108,221 282,517

figures from SBS World News March 24, 2005

* Aid workers claim this figure to be inflated.

Over a thousand Europeans were killed in the disaster. Mostly holiday-makers, of those lost it is estimated that one third were German. Another 1,100 were listed as missing.

See also

Sources


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

January 27, 2005

Saskatchewan town asks for return of \”accidental\” tsunami donation

Saskatchewan town asks for return of “accidental” tsunami donation

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Thursday, January 27, 2005

Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan – The municipal council of a small town in Canada’s Prairies has said it “accidentally” donated $10,000 to the Red Cross for tsunami relief. Now it wants its money back.

The council approved the donation during a Jan. 10 meeting by 3 votes to 2. However, the mayor was in the hospital and the deputy mayor, Barry Lewis, who substituted didn’t realize he could vote. If he had voted, it would have been against the donation.

Some townspeople accused councillor Dorothy Lockwood of ambushing the meeting by presenting the last-minute proposal to divert money from the town’s centennial fireworks fund. Lockwood claimed the timing was urgent as the federal government’s deadline for matching donations was the next day at midnight.

The Red Cross has already deposited the cheque, but has indicated it will return the money.

References



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January 20, 2005

Romanian artists auction off their works for tsunami victims

Romanian artists auction off their works for tsunami victims

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Thursday, January 20, 2005

Several prominent Romanian artists and celebrities will gather at the Radio Hall in Bucharest on Sunday, January 23, to raise money for the victims of the catastrophic Indian Ocean tsunami of December 26, 2004. In an event titled Romanian Artists in Support of Asia, organised by The Reporter Foundation of Romania, artists will auction off their works, as well as personal objects, with all proceeds being donated to the relief efforts for the tsunami victims.

Media celebrities such as the soprano Felicia Filip and singers Angela Similea and Dida Dragan will also be participating, as well as Maia Morgenstern, known internationally for her role in the film The Passion of the Christ. All ambassadors accredited in Bucharest, as well as political personalities, have been invited to participate.

Romanian Artists in Support of Asia is the second major public event organised in Romania to support the victims of the recent Indian Ocean disaster. On Sunday, January 16, the Romanian public raised the equivalent of 395,000 euro in a telethon, while the Romanian Government pledged 150,000 euro for the relief effort.

The artistic event is also part of a campaign by the Bucharest City Hall that seeks to relaunch the image of the Romanian capital as a creative and colourful metropolis. The city will be the first in southeastern Europe to host CowParade, the world’s largest public art event, between June and August this year.

References

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January 18, 2005

Romanians raise 395,000 euro for tsunami victims

Filed under: 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami,Archived,Earthquakes,Romania — admin @ 5:00 am

Romanians raise 395,000 euro for tsunami victims

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Countries affected by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami

Tuesday, January 18, 2005Through a telethon, Romanians have raised 15 billion lei, or the equivalent of 395,000 euro for victims of the devastating Indian Ocean tsunami of Boxing Day 2004 that claimed more than 175,000 victims.

The ten-hour telethon was organised on Sunday, January 16, by the television station Realitatea TV, and was the first time an event of this kind had been staged in the country. Nicoleta Drăguşin, a spokeswoman for the network, claims that, “it was a big success… [15 billion lei] is a lot of money for a private television station to raise.”

Dozens of Romanian celebrities took part in the telethon, including goalkeeper Bogdan Stelea, fashion designers Catinca Roman and Mihai Albu, former Foreign Affairs Minister Mircea Geoană and the soprano Mariana Nicolesco. Newly-elected president Traian Băsescu and prime minister Călin Popescu-Tăriceanu also took part. In between the live showings of celebrities picking up calls from Romanians who had called to donate, there were shown images and footage from the global catastrophe and its aftermath.

Two Romanian tourists have been declared missing in the tsunami. The 395,000 euro raised by the telethon supplement that 150,000 euro worth of aid pledged by the Romanian government in the form of tents, water and drugs to tsunami-stricken areas of South Asia.

References

See also

  • 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

January 6, 2005

Australia to deport asylum seekers to Tsunami Zone

Australia to deport asylum seekers to Tsunami Zone

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Thursday, January 6, 2005

Australia – The Australian Government has said in response to the recent tsunami tragedy that it may take Sri Lankans as humanitarian refugees. Sri Lankans already in the Australian community, however, are being overlooked, according to Ian Rintoul of the Refugee Action Coalition. The government issued hundreds of Sri Lankans their deportation orders on Christmas Eve, and similar conditions affect people from Aceh in Indonesia, near the epicenter of the quake.

The Australian Department of Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs (DIMIA) said it has had a special hotline running since December 30 in response to the tsunami disaster.

“People who usually live in an area that has been directly affected by the tsunamis and may wish to temporarily extend their stay in Australia should contact the Department on the hotline on 1300 735 683,” a Department spokesperson said.

Sources


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

January 5, 2005

IMF Offers Special Loan for Tsunami-Hit Countries

IMF Offers Special Loan for Tsunami-Hit Countries

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Wednesday, January 5, 2005

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Rodrigo Rato offered special relief funds for the countries victim of the tsunami disaster. The money is, however, in the form of a loan. The IMF has been present in the area on various occasions.

The IMF offered a one billion U.S. dollar loan. The money would be given as Emergency Natural Disaster Assistance facility, and would be repaid in full and with interests within 3¼ to 5 years.

The money could help the area tremendously, but since it is a loan as opposed to an outright donation, it may not be as helpful. The loan, some fear, may not lead to economic stability in the long run. Despite the possible long term effects, the governments of the tsunami torn nations may simply have no choice but to accept the offer.

References


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.
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